Project Diary: The Heliotropic Pullover

As soon as she tried it on, Dinah knew she had to knit the Heliotropic Pullover.

A note from Kathleen: About a year ago, my knitting group tried on sweaters from the Spring 2011 Interweave Knits, and they all loved the Heliotropic Pullover by Mercedes Tarasovich Clark. In fact, Dinah loved it so much that she knit herself a Heliotropic in the same yarn and color! Here's her story:

When Kathleen brought out this pullover for last spring's Interweave Knits Gallery, I knew right away that it needed to needed to move to the top of my queue.

I used the recommended yarn, Rowan Lenpur Linen. I've always thought that the warm shade of the sample pullover, Saffron, was "not my color," but all my knit group buddies assured me that the color looked great, so I chose to knit my pullover in in this shade as well.

I've been struggling with size selection, and struggling even more with gauge recently, as I've starting knitting more adult sized garments. Items seem to end up way too large, or uncomfortably tight.

The garment I tried on for the gallery was knit at size 45¼; I liked the fit of the sample, so decided to make that size.

I always have to go down a needle size or two to get gauge, because apparently I am a loose knitter. (On my current project, the recommended needle is a size 9, and I had to go down four sizes to a size 5 to get gauge!)  However, to get gauge using the Lenpur Linen, I only had to go down one size for each of the two recommended needles—I used a size 3 for the ribbing and yoke, and a size 5 for the body.

Closeup of the yoke.

My finished pullover has the same dimensions as illustrated in the pattern schematics—with one exception. I knit extra body rows to increase the side length from the underarms to hem to 16.5 inches.  I'm just shy of being 6 feet tall, so I needed a little more length.

The yoke is made by slipping stitches and moving them over a row, working more stitches in between slipped stitches as the yoke gets larger. It looks complicated, but it's really not.

I really like the twisted stitch ribbing, too. You can see how the twisted knit stitch stands out in the photo at left. Those twisted stitches are pretty dramatic and all you have to do to achieve the effect is knit into the back of the stitch.

The Heliotropic Pullover was the first top-down pullover I've knit, and I really enjoyed the process—I tried it on as I went, plus, there was no seaming! I've worn it both with a blouse under it (as in the picture at left), and with a cami under it when the weather is warmer.



P.S. from Kathleen: Interweave Knits Spring 2011 is on sale now, so download yours today! You'll get the Heliotropic Pullover and lots of other beautiful patterns to welcome the spring. Check some of them out in the Spring 2011 Interweave Knits Galleries. You'll get inspired to knit just like Dinah did.

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